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Saturday, January 11th, 2014 at 11:00 am  |  29 responses

Post Up: Brooklyn’s in the House

Nets win fifth straight, outlast Miami

by Brett Weisband | @weisband

Pacers (29-7) 93, Wizards (16-18) 66

The League’s best defense was in no mood to mess around on Friday, as the Pacers battered the Wizards’ offense. Indiana allowed the fewest points anyone in the Association has given up all season, holding Washington to 32.1 percent shooting in the process. It was the 10th time this year that Indy has held an opponent under 80 points. Thanks to that defense, the Pacers were able to overcome a 2-14 shooting night from Paul George, who scored just eight points but found other ways to contribute as he grabbed 14 rebounds and dished out six assists. David West led the Pacers with 20 points and Lance Stephenson returned from injury to notch a double double with 11 points and 10 boards.

The Wizards trailed 67-57 with a little under 10 minutes to go in the game and proceeded to get bludgeoned the rest of the way, getting shut out for nearly five minutes down the stretch. Bradley Beal was Washington’s top scorer with 17 points.

Pistons (15-22) 114, 76ers (12-24) 104

Detroit was undeterred by a scorching start by the Sixers, fighting back to take a lead after halftime and sprinting to the finish for a win in Philadelphia. Josh Smith fell one steal short of a 5×5 game, but still had a ridiculous stat line: 22 points, 13 rebounds, seven assists, five blocks and four steals. Even in having one of his best games as a Piston, Smith  jacked up an astounding eight 3-pointers, hitting two of them. Brandon Jennings came alive after scoring just one point in the first half, hitting four second-half 3-pointers on his way to 19 points. The Pistons thrived with lineups that featured just two of their three big men (Andre Drummond and Greg Monroe being the other two), perhaps a sign of how things will shake out for Mo Cheeks’ team going forward.

Thaddeus Young bounced back from being shut out in the Sixers’ previous game to lead the team with 22, while Michael Carter-Williams had 21 points, seven boards and four steals. The Sixers shot over 60 percent in the first quarter, but fell to 43.2 percent by game’s end. They allowed Detroit to grab 25 offensive rebounds and had 14 of their shots blocked.

Hawks (20-17) 83, Rockets (23-14) 80

Atlanta trailed late after using a third quarter run to take the lead, but hung in and held off Houston. The Rockets had a few chances to tie it back up late, but Jeremy Lin (11 points) stepped on the 3-point line as he knocked down a jumper from the corner and the Rockets couldn’t get off a shot on their final possession. Kyle Korver (20 points) hit a huge triple and sank four free throws down the stretch and Paul Millsap scored 20 as well for the Hawks.

The Rockets, one of the most efficient teams in the League, struggled shooting the ball all night, converting just 41.3 percent of their field goal attempts and hitting just 6-19 from deep. They also attempted just 22 free throws, nearly 10 fewer than their average. James Harden was the game’s high scorer with 25, while Dwight Howard posted a double double with 15 and 11.

Grizzlies (16-19) 104, Suns (21-14) 99

Mike Conley tied his career high in scoring as the Grizzlies completed a comeback win over the Suns. Memphis trailed by seven points midway through the third quarter, but clamped down on the Suns and got their offense going as well. Conley drilled two jumpers and sank four free throws as things tightened up late, finishing with 31 points and seven assists. Zach Randolph was a beast on the block, going for 20 and 13 and even handing out seven assists.

Goran Dragic did all he could to pull out a win for the Suns, going for 21 and eight assists. He scored the final five points for Phoenix after Memphis started to pull away, but it was too late to help Phoenix get back in it. The Suns had just six turnovers, but the Grizzlies held them to 41.3 shooting.  

Timberwolves (18-18) 119, Bobcats (15-22) 92

It appears the best way for the Timberwolves to avoid last-second losses is to have the game wrapped up at halftime. Minnesota was up by 20 on the Bobcats at half, and Charlotte never mounted a comeback. Nikola Pekovic dominated on the front line, scoring 26 points in just 27 minutes on the court, while Kevin Love had a 19 -14 double double in 32 minutes. Minny used a 20-6 run keyed by the bench to pull away in the second quarter, which they won 39-20.

For the Bobcats, Anthony Tolliver came off the bench to score 21 points on 5-5 shooting from long range. Charlotte got destroyed in the rebounding battle, as the Timberwolves bested them 54-33 on the glass. The Bobcats have now dropped seven of eight games, yet still hold onto the eighth spot in the Eastern conference.

Mavericks (21-16) 107, Pelicans (15-20) 90

Dirk Nowitzki and Monta Ellis propelled the Mavericks to an easy win over the short-handed Pelicans. Both stars topped 20 points, just the 10th time they’ve done that in the same game this season, scoring 24 and 23, respectively. Dirk was active all over, picking up three blocks, two steals and five assists. Dallas never trailed, shooting 50 percent (14-28) from long range and dishing out 32 assists.

Eric Gordon was sizzling, leading the Pellies with 27 points on 9-13 shooting. Anthony Davis did his usual long-armed terror thing, going for 21 points, 13 boards and five blocks, but those two didn’t get much help from their injury-plagued team. Tyreke Evans played nine scoreless minutes and New Orleans was forced to rely on Austin Rivers, who scored 12 points on 6-11 shooting. Missing two of their best shooters in Jrue Holiday and Ryan Anderson, New Orleans somehow took just seven 3-pointers, knocking down three of them.

Nets (15-21) 104, Heat (27-10) 95 (2OT)

Rocking the much-hyped nickname jerseys, Brooklyn outlasted the Heat in double overtime, withstanding a furious LeBron James-led comeback and pulling away after King James fouled out. Joe Johnson scored 32 points, 22 of them in a ridiculous first quarter, but it was Shaun Livingston that was the guiding hand down the stretch for the Nets. The journeyman point guard, who’s come back from a horrific knee injury to finally establish himself as a solid veteran, played 51 minutes and went for 19 points and 11 assists. He scored four points in the second OT period as the Nets outscored Miami 11-2.

LeBron (36 points on 12-21 shooting, seven rebounds, five assists) fouled out toward the end of the first OT, the first time he’s done that in a regular season game in nearly five years, but not before he carried the Heat back into the game after a very lackluster effort early on from the champs. The Heat were playing without Dwyane Wade, as well as Mario Chalmers and Shane Battier. Miami trailed by 14 at the tail end of the third quarter, but stormed back to take lead late in the fourth. LeBron went into Hulk mode after taking a flagrant foul from Mirza Teletovic, scoring nine points to close the fourth after the cheap shot. After Bron fouled out, Norris Cole (18 points) drained an elbow jumper to send it to another OT.

Paul Pierce chipped in 23 for the Nets, while Kevin Garnett continued his kind-of resurgence with 12 and 10, although he missed several jumpers late for the Nets. Brooklyn has now won five straight, putting them smack in the middle of the Playoff chase. If they keep playing like this, they’re going to be a real pain come spring time.

Bulls (16-18) 81, Bucks (7-28) 72

Chicago got a boost from Carlos Boozer’s return from injury, besting the Bucks in a game that left bruises all over the rim. Tom Thibodeau probably loved this brick-fest, as neither team topped 40 percent shooting. The Bucks missed their last 11 shots from the field, allowing the Bulls to get out with a win despite not doing much offensively themselves. After missing two games with a knee injury, Boozer came back to score 19 points and grab 13 rebounds in the win. Chicago got another 18 from Mike Dunleavy, who went 3-3 from long range.

Milwaukee, the worst team in the League, shot just 31.8 percent on the night. They had a few chances to tie it late, as Brandon Knight (12 points) and O.J. Mayo (16 points) got good looks from three, but both bricked it. The Bucks didn’t make a field goal for the final 5:09 of the game.

Cavaliers (13-23) 113, Jazz (12-26) 102

The Cavaliers got the Luol Deng era off to a good start in Salt Lake City. The freshly acquired swingman struggled in his debut, but Kyrie Irving took care of things for Cleveland. Irving scored 17 of his 25 points in the decisive third quarter, where the Cavs turned a three-point deficit into a 15 point lead. Irving filled up his box score line, tallying eight assists, six rebounds and five steals to go along with his scoring outburst. Deng had 10 points in his 21-minute debut, but turned the ball over four times in his short run. Tristan Thompson had 18 and 15 for Cleveland and Dion Waiters came off the bench to score 17.

Richard Jefferson, who somehow is still playing significant minutes in the League, led Utah with 18 points. Trey Burke kept up his belated push for Rookie of the Year, scoring 17 points (7-15 shooting, 2-5 from deep) and handing out six assists.

Kings (12-22) 103, Magic (10-26) 83

The Kings won their second straight home game, taking it to the undersized Magic. DeMarcus Cousins dominated inside with 24 points and 14 boards, even racking up six assists along the way. With Nikola Vucevic concussed and sidelined, Orlando’s tallest starter was the 6’9” Tobias Harris (16 points, six rebounds). That spelled trouble, as Orlando got out-rebounded 54-37. Rudy Gay, just as tall as Orlando’s “big” men, had a double double as well, going for 22 and 10 with five assists.

The Magic dropped their sixth straight and shot the ball miserably at just 33.3 percent. Arron Afflalo struggled mightily, shooting 3-12 and 1-6 on 3-pointers for his 15 points. Orlando’s shooting and scoring numbers were both their lowest of the season.  

Warriors (25-14) 99, Celtics (13-24) 97

The Warriors looked fatigued in their first game back at Oracle after their East Coast swing. They didn’t have their legs all night, leaving jumper after jumper short (41.3 percent from the field, 30.8 percent on 3-pointers). But in crunch time, they had Stephen Curry. With 2.1 seconds left in a tie game, Curry splashed a go-ahead jumper to hand the Warriors a win before they get a few days of rest. Andre Iguodala stepped up while most of his teammates suffered through rough games, coming up with a phenomenal line of 22 points (9-14 shooting), seven assists, five rebounds and three steals. Dre came up with a few big plays down the stretch, picking up six points, two assists and a steal down the stretch.

The Celtics refused to fade away, pushing back every time it appeared Golden State was ready to pull away. Jeff Green scored 24 points, including a clutch leaner to tie it up at 97 with 11 seconds to go, and pulled down 10 boards. Jared Sullinger came off the bench to net 21 for the Celtics, who out-shot and out-rebounded the Warriors in the loss.

Clippers (26-13) 123, Lakers (14-23) 87

Even without Chris Paul, the Clippers still had more than enough firepower to embarrass their co-tenants at the Staples Center. The Clips were up by as many as 42 points in the third, hammering the Lakers defensively to the tune of 34.5 shooting for the game. Blake Griffin was dominant once again, going for 33 points, 12 boards, four assists, four steals and two blocks in just 30 minutes on the court, shooting 12-15 in the process. The Clippers didn’t even shoot 50 percent in the romp, but won the turnover battle 21-8 and outrebounded the Lakers by nine.

Kendall Marshall was the lone bright spot offensively for the Lakers, putting up a double double with 16 points and 10 assists. His defense was lacking though, as his counterpart Darren Collison went for 20 points and seven assists, getting open for a variety of corner 3-pointers, layups and elbow jumpers. Basically, Marshall was a sieve.

The Clippers welcomed back J.J. Redick from his wrist injury and the sharpshooter picked up right where he left off. Redick scored 19 points on 8-15 shooting in his return, playing 23 minutes before things got out of hand. DeAndre Jordan had a double double with 13 and 10 for the Clips, who got to rest their starters late. The Clippers used two big runs – 10-0 and 14-0 – to distance themselves from the Lakers early on. A storyline to keep an eye on for the Clippers is Blake’s free throw shooting. He was 9-11 at the line on Friday, pushing his January percentage to 73.3 percent after shooting 76.7 percent in December. That’s a big deal for a career 62 percent shooter from the stripe, and will go a long way late in Playoff games this spring.

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  • spit hot fiyah

    the polarizing josh smith, here is his updated shot chart

    the 0% from one of the corners is just amazing. and his line yesterday was crazy: 22p 13r 7a 5b 4s and only 3to. yet he couldn’t resist jacking up 8 threes.

  • Max

    The guy could be such an amazing player yet he f*cks it all up by taking dumbass shots he has no part in taking…

  • JJ Jones

    To those who say the heat are just coasting ane will three-peat here’s a little comparison laker lost to boston in 6 won against orlando in 5 ane won against boston in 7 before getting swept by the mavs. Miami loses to the mavs in 6 won against okc in 5 and beat the spurs 7 this year ?? The majority of this team is too old and slow to play the kind of defense necessary to three peat. Theres a reason why teams don’t make it to 4 finals in a row…lose of hunger. Notice how gassed lebron seems to get compared to when he was younger and its espically noticeable when wade isn’t playing to take pressure of him. Without that ray allen three this lethargic team would never have been favored this year. Its the pacers year imo as they were one mistake away from beating the hest in six last year (not having roy hibbert in to protect the rim at the end of game 1)

  • spit hot fiyah

    yeah, i talked about this many times this season already. but the coaching staff also deserves some blame here. if they put me out on the wing after paying me millions and they don’t get mad at me after i try to break the backboard by throwing the ball at it, i might just keep on doing it. then again, if i really care about being the best player i can be and maximize my potential, i would focus on what i do best and stay away from my weaknesses until they can be considered strenghts

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    Demarcus Cousins has been, by far, the best Center in the league for the last month.

  • spit hot fiyah

    and rudy gay keeps shooting over 50% in almost every game

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    This is the first time in his career really where he isn’t the first option. Maybe it really was just too much responsibility for him in Memphis and Toronto. .
    Well and Sacramento does a much better job of getting him the ball in high efficiency areas, I really like what Mike Malone is doing over there.

  • spit hot fiyah

    yeah that’s probably what they hoped for when they got him. in his career his usage rate and efficiency has had a strong inverse relation ship. it was just way too much of an offensive burden in toronto it seems like.

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk
  • Saleem Rainman

    Why did Paul Pierce get the play ran for him to try and win the game at the end of regulation and the first overtime? Everyone knows Joe Johnson is their closer…

    John Wall WAtch:

    4-15 shooting, only THREE assists to 2 turnovers, with 7 rebounds.

  • the rain

    PP’s three was halfway down at the end of reg

  • Nathan Shane Long

    Friday night thoughts

    1.I am not a fan of those GIMMICK nickname jerseys but yet some of those nickname should be more appropriate such as

    LeBron-”DRAMA KING” OR “KING FLOP”
    D-WADE- “RAW-DOG
    RAY ALLEN- “RING WHORE”
    KEVIN GARNETT-”WASHED UP”
    JOE JOHNSON “OVERPAID”
    SHAUN LIVINGSTON “DON’T YOUTUBE ME

    2.LeBron level of arrogance is disgusting and appalling these days

    3.John Wall 4-15 shooting YIKES!!!!!!!! not been looking real good lately should Wall be an all-star this season off default with Rose career being F’N OVER Rondo not playing Deron Williams falling off and Jrue Holiday in the west everyone knows though Kyrie will be the starter in the East at point guard

    4.Anyone remember on opening night when the Lakers beat the Clippers and all the “Lakers fans” were talking trash on social media and were DICKRIDING Xavier Henry well last night was payback for that

    5.Stephen Curry FTW

  • Saleem Rainman

    sure, but Joe Johnson doesnt miss.

  • Conor

    Bosh played excellent defence against Johnson.

  • Conor

    Agree with everything other than #4. The difference was that half of that Opening Night Lakers team wasn’t active last night…

  • brothasdontsurf

    Me while watching the slaughter that took place in Los Angeles on the night of January 10, 2014:

  • candlewood jay

    Replying back to your own post?

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    Idk you can figure it out with all your life experience, it’s too dark for me to tell in this basement

  • JJ Jones

    Lebrons arrogance will be their undoing.And wad needs to man up and do what he paid to do play not sit on his ass he’s going to get hurt anyway its inevitable

  • Max

    Lmao at trying to break the backboard haha.

  • Max

    Lol, Shaun Livingston: “don’t youtube me” hahahah

  • Max

    Much like Monta maybe?
    Not fit to be your first option but nice as a 2nd or 3rd one?

  • Nathan Shane Long

    #BLACKPEOPLE

  • LakeShow

    I’d feel worse for the Heat. The Knicks, then the Nets…. Ouuch…

  • http://www.rich-imaging.com/ Dutch Rich

    Best nickname in the NBA will not be available in Jersey form. I’m pissed. I spent 2 hours in wtf mode trying to read the back of Kirilenko’s uni.

  • brothasdontsurf

    No dude, No.The Lakers lost by 40 points. Each player who stepped on the floor in a purple jersey lost some of their manhood last night.

  • playa

    +1, but no one will give him any credit cause he’s not a WINNER or some crap like that,and Cousins is scoring more than Dwight or whichever present center ever did.

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    yeah, definitely same type of situation. Monta is pretty up and down, but in general i definitely agree.

  • LakeShow

    Well that was fun to watch Shaun “Night of the Living(dead”)ston outplay LeBron…

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